Keynote speaker: Dr Ulrike Schmidt
Professor Ulrike Schmidt (MD PhD FRCPsych) is Professor of Eating Disorders and Head of the Department of Psychological Medicine at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience at King’s College London (KCL) as well as a Consultant Psychiatrist at the Eating Disorders Service at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM).
Professor Schmidt was a member of the NICE Eating Disorders Guidelines development group, chair of the Section of Eating Disorders at the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and a board member of the Academy for Eating Disorders.
Professor Schmidt’s work has been recognized through the receipt of several prestigious awards including the 2005 National Health Service Award for Innovative Service Delivery; the 2009 Academy for Eating Disorders Leadership Award for Clinical, Educational and Administrative Service; the 2013 KCL Supervisory Excellence Award; the 2014 Hilde Bruch Award for Outstanding Achievements in Eating Disorders Research and Treatment; the British Medical Journal's 2017 Mental Health Team of the Year Award; and the NIHR Senior Investigator Award. Professor Schmidt has published some 330 peer-reviewed papers and 90 other publications on eating disorders, including text books, chapters, patient manuals, and web-based treatment or training packages.
Novel brain directed treatments in anorexia nervosa
Anorexia nervosa is a disabling and deadly disorder. Talking therapies are somewhat effective, but treatment innovations are urgently needed, especially for adults with severe and enduring illness. Given improved understanding of the brain circuitry involved in anorexia nervosa, a diverse range of novel brain directed treatments are emerging as potential adjuncts to treatment of this disorder, which have different degrees of invasiveness/reversibility. These include cognitive trainings (e.g. cognitive remediation therapy), novel medications (e.g. oxytocin, ketamine), non-invasive brain stimulation [e.g. repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS)], neurofeedback, and neurosurgical methods (e.g. deep brain stimulation, stereotactic ablation). I will review what is known about the efficacy, mechanisms of action, treatment targets/protocols, safety profiles, scalability and ethical considerations relevant to these different approaches. I will present examples from our own work, such as our recent sham-controlled trial of rTMS in severe enduring anorexia nervosa.
Keynote speaker: Peter McEvoy
Professor Peter McEvoy is a Professor of Clinical Psychology at the School of Psychology, Curtin University, Australia, where he is a tenured teaching and research academic in the postgraduate psychology program. He is also a Senior Clinical Psychologist and Research Director at the Centre for Clinical Interventions (CCI), which is a community mental health clinic that specialises in psychological treatments for eating, anxiety, and affective disorders.
In addition to psychotherapy, CCI provides free online treatment modules that are downloadable from its website (www.cci.health.wa.gov.au), trains health professionals in evidence-supported treatments for mental disorders, and conducts clinically applied research. Dr McEvoy has published around 100 peer reviewed journal articles and book chapters on the assessment, maintenance, and treatment of emotional disorders, and he is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Anxiety Disorders and the Journal of Experimental Psychopathology.
Keynote Abstract: The use of imagery in psychotherapy for emotional disorders: the state of the art and evidence
The use of mental imagery in psychotherapy is not new, but the unique properties of imagery-based processing are rarely used in clinical practice to optimise motivational and affective engagement during the change process. Evidence from the experimental and clinical science literatures indicates that multisensory, imagery-based processing is more affectively arousing than analytical verbal-linguistic processing, and that engaging the imagery mode may more comprehensively activate and facilitate change in emotional networks. I will review evidence across various emotional disorders that imagery-based processing facilitates powerful and enduring cognitive and emotional change, and will describe our own work within the context of social anxiety. Our protocol involves a range of ‘imagery enhancements’, such as: integrating mental imagery with video feedback to modify self-images; imagery-based approaches to modifying core beliefs about self, others, and the world (e.g., imagery rescripting); the use of metaphorical coping imagery; future-based imagery to facilitate attainment of valued life goals; and imagery enhancements for traditional cognitive behavioural techniques (e.g., behavioural experiments, cognitive restructuring). Potential applications of this work to the eating disorders will be presented, including a current collaboration using imagery rescripting for individuals with anorexia nervosa.